Time to pack. I look at the schedule in horror. 15 days without laundry. How did this happen? Fire the manager!
Oh, wait. That would be me.
On show days I go through 3 outfits (street clothes and two sets of stage). How will I fit all that in the van? Good thing I'm not tall.
I work off a five page master packing list. It holds everything I've ever needed ontour. I assume I can eliminate at least half, since I don't need foreign currency, passport, or knee pads.
Wrong. Still four pages.
Two hanging bags, suitcase, two guitars, a large gear box filled with cables, strings, mics, pedals, for stage. A suitcase, computer bag, and home traction kit for me.. Plus a "spares bag" that holds the second half of those 15 days. Also an old spare computer in its original box.
This can't be. Must ramp down. I take a half day, unpack everything, lose two T-shirts and a pair of socks.Then I add my sneakers.
Oh wait! We're going to Maine. In the winter. Thank God the spares bag is expandable. I manage to stuff vest, hat, scarf, gloves in, though I can't close it until I sit on it while holding our new puppy, Gracie Mae. Who has quadrupled in size and weight in the past month. Hm. Perhaps I should just put everything inside her. She's obviously expanding.
This doesn't include merchandise, posters, paperwork. Not to mention our new credit card machine, the Square, which we will attach to our new iPad while facing East and saying strenuous prayers for its good health and reliability
Feeling managerial, I talk with my agents. None of the folk shows are selling well this season. Ditto jazz, Celtic, "indie" and "Americana", whatever they are now. There are clear reasons, and I posted them all in my own forum here as well as here, on my own Facebook page. I suggest going to the forum, since Facebook arbitrarily removes my posts when I'm not looking. I'm too busy packing to keep up anyway.
I've had a few distractions. Bette Midler and I spent a day working on a lovely song called "I Will Bring You Spring." I've been telling her she should try writing songs since I first met her, back around 1974 - and for a first-time songwriter she was incredible. Pat and I spent the next evening eating sushi with Bette and her husband Martin, laughing a lot. I feel better afterwards; I bet even Bette Midler has to pack when she goes on tour. Though probably not as many bags. Or maybe more. She's taller than I am.
Gracie Mae is one of the great teethers of all time, so I'm doubly grateful to Karensews for the cool Rude Girl stuffy. Also to whoever invented ice cubes, which provide her with a cheap fun way to ruin the kitchen floor while chewing on them.
Spent a great night at the Belcourt with Walter Egan, Don Henry, Diana Jones, Gretchen Peters, Darryl Purpose and Barry Walsh. Left wishing we could take it on the road. In fact, Diana will be on the road with me for a few shows, and I'll be working with Tom Paxton as well.
Uh oh. Just remembered I'm in the studio tomorrow laying down new songs, and at the Bluebird Saturday. Well, that leaves Sunday to re-pack...
What an Anniversary!
50 years since her first album, 40 years since her first Grammy.
$80,500 from Pearl this year!
$80,500. That's how much we just sent to our four current scholarship funds. $909,000. That's how much money the Pearl Foundation has now given to fund our five ongoing scholarships for returning students.
Patience & Sarah wins prestigious Earphones Award!
Patience & Sarah has won a prestigious Earphones Award from AudioFile. Here's some of what they had to say: "Janis Ian and Jean Smart bring exquisite joy, vulnerability, and honesty to their narration of Isabel Miller's 1969 historical fiction novel about the love between a poor farmer's daughter, Sarah, and a folk painter, Patience, in nineteenth-century New England."